Terrifying Precedent: Woman to Be Tried for Murder for Giving Birth to Stillborn When She Was 16

Mississippi has one of the worst records for maternal and infant health in the U.S., as well as some of the highest rates of teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease, and among some of the most restrictive policies on abortion…

“It is tremendously, tremendously frightening, this case…There’s real fear for young women whose babies are dying early who [lack the resources to] defend themselves and their actions.”

Rennie Gibbs’ daughter was stillborn with the cord wrapped around her neck, but when autopsy results turned up traces of a cocaine byproduct in her baby’s blood, Gibbs was indicted for “depraved heart murder,” with a maximum sentence of life in prison.

It should come as no surprise that Gibbs is a young, low-income black woman, a member of a demographic disproportionately targeted by the legal system in cases like this and others, and more vulnerable to stillbirths.

A committee for the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists determined that “pregnant women who fear the legal system avoid or emotionally disengage from prenatal care - the very thing that might help assure they give birth to health babies. Drug enforcement policies that deter women from seeking prenatal care are contrary to the welfare of the mother and fetus.”

Until we stop pretending punishment and stigma is an effective deterrent, and work to address the underlying issues in maternal health, women will continue to be targeted for addiction, mental illness, and self-determination.


Just a few of the tragic cases of human rights abuses documented in the investigative series, Women Incarcerated, by Sharona Coutts and Zoe Greenberg at RH Reality Check. In an overcrowded system designed for men, women suffer miscarriages, stillbirths, and ectopic pregnancies as guards look on or ignore them, or in some cases, shackle them as they labor. 

After a few sounds released by Ethan Kath, one half of Crystal Castles, it is time for the other half, Alice Glass to release a new sound. Making a statement against abusive relationships (we can imagine which relationship she is reffering to), the track will be out on July 18th and all the digital purchases “ will benefit organizations (like the nonprofit RAINN) that help survivors of domestic abuse, sexual violence and incest.”

You can check on Alice Glass statement here on her website

Made with SoundCloud

Skeleton displaying “fetal rickets”. What was once known as “fetal rickets” is actually the most common form of dwarfism, called achondroplasia. Since achondroplasia is spontaneously occurring in 85% of cases, it’s understandable that doctors would believe that nutrition of the mother was the cause of the deformity of their baby.

Around 1900-1920, a large amount of research was done regarding prenatal care and disorders in the newborn. The fetal x-ray work done by George H. Evans et al was one of the defining projects in differentiating achondroplasia from nutritional deficiencies of the mother.